Tuesday, 29 September 2009

More Juicy Writing

On Sunday Madi and I tackled the second chapter of Juicy Writing. This chapter was about ideas, and how to get them. I like the bit where Brigid Lowry says,
Your job as a writer is to stay alive to all of it, to collect the world and turn it into stories.
Madi's story starter this time was It started with bananas on toast...and heres her spin on it.
Bananas on Toast, By Madi Morris
It was that morning I realised I wanted to be a chef. It was my thirteenth birthday. It started with my favourite breakfast, bananas on toast. Cassie was not feeling well, and since mother cannot cook without it turning into a disaster, I had to.
As I was cutting the bananas, I felt the chef's urge. If you're not a chef, you probably don't understand the urge. I suddenly felt like cutting faster and more skillfully. Mother was involved in her work, so she didn't see how much of a pleasure it was to be making bananas on toast in our kitchen. But Cassie, or Cassandra as I call her, saw my talent. Even though she was only eleven, she saw it, because she had the urge as well. We chatted as I turned bananas on toast into a more delicious meal using various sugars and other secret stuff. Cassandra called it amazing, but she sneezed a few times near the food, so I made her go and sit on the couch.
I felt good as I put the food on mothers desk in her office.
"Mother, do you think I have the talent to become a chef?" I said, as she bit into it. She shut down her laptop and put the toast back on its plate.
"Got to go," she said as she walked out into the kitchen.
Cassandra had finished both bits of her toast and was eating mine.
"Cassie, I can't drop you off, so take the bus. Emma, you need to tell the nanny to get here early, you can't cook at all. Cassie, get well tomorrow." And with her sharp words she walked out. Cassie looked like she was about to puke.
"God Em, my senses are coming back.....uh......uh.....never cook again!" She grabbed her bag and ran out the door.
I ran over to the phone and called the nanny. "Hi, Miss K, we won't need you today. My auntie has made a surprise visit and she's going to help me become a chef. Thanks." I put down the phone. Yeah, right. Auntie Indiah was just as busy as her mum. She was a chef and taught at a chef school. I just wanted to be home alone.
The microwave let me know it was twelve o' clock. I decided to make pancakes, (your home alone, just turned thirteen, of course you're going to eat what you want, you're a teenager).
The phone rang.
"Hey Emma, it's Miss K, can I speak to your auntie about when I should come over to clean?"
"Sorry Miss K, she's just gone to the bathroom..."
"That's okay, I can wait a few minutes."
"To take a bath. I gotta go, I'm cooking special pancakes for lunch. See you tomorrow."
I hung up and wrote on the notepad by the fridge,
If Miss K comes to the door, recite this: Auntie fell asleep on the couch
then went back to cooking.
***For a limited time only, order a pizza and win a trip to America to go to cooking school. 092-***
I picked up the phone and dialed the number, it clicked over.
"Hello, Downunder Pizzas."
"Hello, I'd like to order a pizza please."
"What kind miss?"
"Yes, please."
"Your pizza miss."
"Thank you"
"Excuse me, are you home alone?"
"No, my auntie is in the study"
"Okay. Here is the form to sign for the competition."
"I won!" I said to my mother the next day. But I was interrupted by Miss K coming through the door.
"Hi Brittany, has your sister gone home?" Oh no!
"Yes.....uh..... she has, I think you need to pick up Cassandra from school" I said quickly, knowing my mother would agree.
"Yes," She said, not bothered, then, "what did you win?"
I told her I'd had to fake that auntie was here so that I could sign the form.
Guess what, auntie Indiah teaches there! I'm going to be a chef!

I had my eye on a couple of other sentences, but Madi said I should do a story about Op shops (one of the topics). I'm guessing other countries have opportunity shops, but if not, these are basically secondhand clothing stores.
The Op Shop By Hayley Morris
It was comically Harry Potteresque, tucked down at the end of a labyrinth of cobbled alleyways, unmarked, yet not unremarkable.
At first look, and for most, one look was all they took, Opportunity Knocks was an op shop like any other. Row upon row of mismatched colours, patterns and styles, smelling of old people, moth balls and incense.
But it wasn't old clothes or smells that brought people through the faded wooden doorway of the little shop. People came for two things, Saskia and her virtues.
Saskia was from Russia, and, though she seldom wasted words, her accent was thick and heavy and sweet, pouring over you like maple syrup. Many of Saskia's customers had been visiting her for a decade or two, and she never seemed to change from first meeting to last. A small, sprightly woman, whose age varied depending on who you asked and at what time of the day, her blond hair shone like silk and her opal flecked eyes seemed to stare into your soul and bathe it in understanding.
If Saskia was captivating, it was her virtues that were compelling. People came from all over the world to seek them out. Saskia knew of course, without word or glance being exchanged, who was innocently combing the racks for a vintage treasure, and who was seeking a little something more. And without really knowing how, you'd find yourself in the back room, staring in disbelief at thousands of tiny blue bottles glowing back at you.
Harried mothers came and went, armed with bottles of patience, gentleness and determination. Suspicious spouses happily opened their wallets wide for some truthfulness, commitment, faithfulness and loyalty. Addicts of all vices scooped up self-discipline, courage and sacrifice. Lonely hearts sought out the little shop for love, idle bodies for orderliness and cleanliness and dreamers dosed up on wonder and beauty and creativity.
One day, without warning, Saskia and her virtues were gone. The little shop stood quiet and empty. Everyone seemed to have a theory. Some said she had died, and having no children, had taken the secrets of her virtues to the grave. Others argued that she did have children, and it was to Russia, and them that she had returned, to pass on her virtues before it was too late. Some claimed her virtues had just been water and she was in jail for fraud. Others swore that she had retired to the seaside, in a pretty little cottage, where she sat on the porch, watched the ocean and smiled all day long, remembering the people she'd helped.
Of course, no one could really know for sure. And whilst her customers could still recall the mesmerising eyes and musical clinks of the tiny blue bottles in vivid detail, most wondered if she had ever been anything more that a wonderful, beautiful dream.
That's us guys, thanks for reading!


Jacinta said...

you guys are awesome!!!

(techincally, yes, I am talking about girls and not boys)

Sarah said...

Hay that's beautiful and Madi great characterisation. I'm in awe of your talents gals. Perhaps I should give this a whirl and see if my brain cells still work.

The Word Party

Loving words clutch crimson roses,
Rude words sniff and pick their noses,
Sly words come dressed as foxes,
Short words stand on cardboard boxes,
Common words tell jokes and gabble,
Complicated words play Scrabble,
Swear words stamp around and shout,
Hard words stare eachother out,
Foreign words look lost and shrug,
Careless words trip on the rug,
Long words slouch with stooping shoulders,
Code words carry secret folders,
Silly words flick rubber bands,
Hyphenated words hold hands,
Strong words show off, bending metal,
Sweet words call each other 'petal',
Small words yawn and suck their thumbs,
Till at last the morning comes,
Kind words give out farewell posies....
Snap! The dictionary closes.